County Buildings Win Award

Aug. 23, 2016
For Immediate Release

Three Fairfax County Buildings Win Exceptional Design Awards


Three major capital building projects managed by the Capital Facilities Business Area of Fairfax County’s Department of Public Works and Environmental Services have earned Exceptional Design Awards, a program that recognizes achievement in the total design of a building and its site. The Woodrow Wilson Library earned a merit award, and the McLean Police Station and Governmental Center and Merrifield Center each earned honorable mentions. A design jury selected nine projects to receive awards at the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors meeting on Tuesday, Oct. 18, 2016.

Capital Facilities Director Ron Kirkpatrick said, “These award-winning projects demonstrate DPWES’ commitment to providing quality buildings and infrastructure to meet the changing needs of our communities. We are particularly excited about the numerous sustainable design features incorporated into each of these facilities.”

The 2016 Exceptional Design Awards program is sponsored by the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors and administered by the county's Department of Planning and Zoning in cooperation with the County Architectural Review Board and the Northern Virginia Chapter of the American Institute of Architects.

Winning projects met the following criteria:

  • Exemplifies a superior work of architecture
  • Incorporates outstanding site design and landscaping
  • Takes into account the context of the project design in relationship to its surroundings
  • Applies energy and water conservation, and other green building practices

NEW: View the Story Map of the 2016 Exceptional Design Award Winners



Woodro Wilson Library
Woodrow Wilson Library - Merit Award

The original 1967 library, designed by noted local architect J. Russell Bailey, had been modified several times, but was inadequately sized, outdated, and inefficient. The renovation project consisted of a 2,120 square foot addition to the existing building in Falls Church. The original library’s traditional architecture was preserved and complemented with a contemporary addition using fiber reinforced concrete siding and a single standing seam roof to create a cohesive facility. The project was completed in 2015 and is USGBC LEED Gold Certified.

Sustainable Design Highlights

  • Energy-efficient design is expected to reduce annual electricity consumption by 35 percent
  • The reflective roof keeps the building cool in the summer
  • Ninety-five percent of the interior spaces are illuminated with natural light
  • Water-saving features conserve more than 40 percent more water per year than a conventionally designed building



McLean Police Station & Governmental Center
McLean Police Station & Governmental Center – Honorable Mention

The 1970s era building housed the Fairfax County Police Department, Dranesville District Board of Supervisors office, and Chamber of Commerce offices. The renovation included a new main entrance and central lobby, new window and roof, upgraded mechanical, lighting, and plumbing systems, improved infrastructure to support technology needs, and reconfigured access to parking. A community room was added and the community soccer field was enhanced. Offices were enlarged and improved. The project was completed in 2015 and is USGBC LEED Gold Certified.

Sustainable Design Highlights

  • Water-saving plumbing fixtures save more than 50,000 gallons of water annually
  • Landscaping with native and adapted plants eliminated the need for irrigation
  • The energy efficient building now uses 39 percent less energy
  • Rain gardens, infiltration swales, and a large underground detention structure provide improved stormwater infiltration and water quality
  • About 90 percent of construction and demolition waste was recycled, and new materials offered high recycled content or were regionally produced
  • Special adhesives, paints, carpet, and furniture minimize chemical compound emissions to improve air quality
  • A highly reflective roof with a white roof membrane reflects heat and reduces the building’s cooling load



Merrifield Center
Merrifield Center – Honorable Mention

The Merrifield Center is a consolidation of 13 municipal mental health programs under the Community Services Board that were relocated from various leased facilities throughout the county including a 24/7 emergency crisis center. The consolidated facility reduces the overall program area by 25 percent by utilizing shared resources. The design creates an exterior and interior environment that fosters a soothing, healing, and therapeutic setting using evidence-based design strategies. The project was completed in Nov. 2014 and is USGBC LEED Silver Certified (U.S. Green Building Council, Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design).

Sustainable Design Highlights

  • Uses sustainable materials with high recycled content, low-emitting materials, and regional materials
  • Landscaping includes native and drought-resistant plants
  • Low impact stormwater features – porous pavers and asphalt, grass pavers, and two vegetated roofs
  • Low-flow fixtures conserve water
  • Daylight harvesting and lighting control system with vacancy sensors and occupancy sensors
  • LED garage lighting with dimming controls



Contact: Matthew Kaiser, Public Information Officer 
Department of Public Works and Environmental Services 
703-324-8455, TTY 711


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